Simple urine test could spot signs of Alzheimer's before doctors notice it | The Sun

A BASIC urine test could spot early Alzheimer’s disease before doctors notice it, a study claims.

More than half a million Brits have the illness, making it the top cause of dementia.

But it requires complex tests and scans to diagnose, meaning people cannot be mass-screened to catch it early.

Experts at Jiao Tong University in Shanghai, China, say a simple pee test could spot brain decline before symptoms get bad.

It works by detecting high levels of formic acid, which they found was a red flag for the brain.

Writing in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, Dr Qihao Guo said the test could sound the alarm during a “golden window”.

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He said: “Alzheimer’s is a continuous and concealed chronic disease, meaning it can develop and last for many years before obvious cognitive impairment emerges. 

“The early stages of the disease occur before the irreversible dementia stage, and this is the golden window for intervention and treatment. 

“Therefore, large-scale screening for early-stage Alzheimer’s disease is necessary for the elderly.”

The study involved 574 people split into five groups ranging from normal brain function to full-blown Alzheimer’s.

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The researchers said: “With the progression of the disease, urinary formic acid levels showed an overall upward trend.

“The detection of urine biomarkers of Alzheimer’s is convenient and cost-effective.”

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